I have a real problem with the Kraft Heinz Company.
Why is it that I’m not able to buy glass bottles of Heinz Ketchup anywhere in Northeast PA. I am able to buy the glass bottles in Pittsburgh, but not in my hometown of Sweet Valley (or anywhere in NEPA for that matter).
After calling my Heinz/Kraft Ketchup contacts, including the 800 # on the back of the bottle – here’s what I learned — It is considered a “food service item.” This means that the bottles are only available for restaurants and commercial businesses to purchase.
If I can buy it in the glass bottle in any local “Jaunt Iggles” (that’s Pittsburghese for Giant Eagle – a popular chain of supermarkets in Pittsburgh/SWPA), I should be able to buy it ANYWHERE including Northeast PA.
So what the dill(pickle)? As far as I’m concerned, there is a very different set of tastes associated with glass and plastic bottles which I can prove in this blind taste test which my kid allowed me to film. Here’s the non-scientific taste test setup:
As you can see the results were fairly obvious.
Well, not really, because my lovely son flubbed the results. Even though he didn’t see me setup the test, he knew by the ketchup textures which one was which, FURTHER PROVING MY POINT. I double checked the ingredient list on both bottles and they are the same, however the glass bottle ketchup is more smooth and somewhat thinner. The plastic bottle ketchup is thicker. To me, the glass bottled ketchup tastes more tangy as well. This is the same results whether the ketchup has been room temperature or in the refrigerator.
However, just humor me and watch this stupid video anyway because, I said so…
There also seems to be a divine hatred toward non-Heinz Ketchup in Pittsburgh. If you like Ketchup that’s not Heinz then you’re an outcast of society. Hunts? I think not.
The history of Heinz ketchup is as follows:
The company was founded some 125 years ago by Henry John Heinz, the son of a German immigrant. It has been selling ketchup since 1876. Legend has it that Henry John Heinz invented ketchup by adapting a Chinese recipe for so-called Cat Sup, a thick sauce made from tomatoes, special seasoning and starch.
Food engineer Werner Stoll of the Heinz company is positive: “H.J. Heinz invented ketchup. That’s for sure. The concept of ketchup began here in Pittsburgh. It didn’t exist before that.”
The extraordinary story of Heinz ketchup began with 25-year old H.J. Heinz experimenting in the kitchen of his German mother. He decided to market his mother’s grated horseradish and bottled this product in clear glass jars to show its purity. Heinz’ horseradish soon became a success.
Fast forward to 2015…The Kraft Heinz Company was formed by the merger of Kraft Foods Group and Heinz. The merger was backed by 3G Capital and Berkshire Hathaway, which invested US$10 billion in the deal, making Kraft Heinz worth about US$46 billion. In 2015, the Kraft Heinz Company had 13 different brands with $500 million or more each in annual sales.
In addition to the rich history of Pittsburgh’s most favorite condiment, the Heinz History Center is home to several interesting exhibits one of which includes the ENTIRE ORIGINAL MISTER ROGERS’ NEIGHBORHOOD SET. If you’ve been paying attention, this was previously on my Pittsburgh bucket list.
A few weeks ago, me and a friend from Nebraska got into a verbal altercation about whether or not Heinz 57 sauce was the same as being ketchup. I was convinced it was, he was not. It wasn’t until I went to the supermarket and bought a bottle of the Heinz 57 sauce and tasted it until I knew that was not the case. Here’s a picture of the bottles for your reference.
To note: YOU CAN BUY THE 57 SAUCE IN A GLASS BOTTLE. SO WHY CANNOT I NOT ALSO GET THE KETCHUP IN A GLASS BOTTLE. I guess a logical argument could be that it costs too much money and the road infrastructure from Pburgh to NEPA is too poor and the bottles would smash. HOWEVER, WHY IS 57 SAUCE ALSO NOT IN A PLASTIC BOTTLE. WHY CAN THE RESTAURANTS HAVE THE GLASS BOTTLES, BUT NOT US. Sorry….it gets me a little fired up.
I’m not saying it’s the only Ketchup, but it kind of is. There is a local startup (I think) in Pittston, home of the annual tomato festival, that makes their own brand of tomato ketchup. I haven’t tried it, but I hear it isn’t half bad. Here’s their website should you be interested in picking up a bottle locally.
I’m just really bothered that restaurants can have the Ketchup, and us commoners cannot. I don’t want to drive halfway across the state to get my glass bottles of ketchup. So I guess for someone who isn’t a connoisseur of ketchup usually, I am pretty well versed in the art of making a well informed decision about my ketchup.
As Bruno Mars would say, CATCH UP. Oops…I meant to say “Keep up!” Lol, whatever.
YES I AM AWARE I WROTE AN ENTIRE BLOG POST ABOUT KETCHUP. Shut up. Leave me alone.